Swiss Life and Vauban Infrastructure Expand European Rail Holdings

Posted on 06/21/2022

A consortium comprising Swiss Life Asset Managers (Swiss Life AM) and Vauban Infrastructure Partners funds has acquired freight car rental firm Wascosa Holding AG from Philipp Müller and his family. Wascosa Holding is active in more than 20 countries in Europe, handles a fleet of more than 15,000 wagons. The railcars asset manager was founded in 1964 and headquartered in Lucerne, Switzerland. Müller has agreed to extend his tenure as Wascosa’s chairman of the board of directors.

Rhine Rail Investment AG is the special purpose vehicle set up by Swiss Life AM and Vauban Infrastructure Partners. In August 2021, Rhine Rail Investment AG made a cash offer of €12.80 per share to the shareholders of Aves One AG. The offer price represented a premium of approximately 38.6% over the volume-weighted average share price of the last three months prior to the publication of the decision to make an offer. A group of shareholders owning more than 85 percent of the company have irrevocably committed to tender their shares. The enterprise value is around €1 billion. The buyer group funneled an additional €100 million into Aves One’s capital structure. Headquartered in Hamburg, Germany, the listed company Aves One is one of the largest owners of railcars and swap bodies in Europe. Lazard Ltd. acted as sole financial advisor and Latham & Watkins LLP acted as legal adviser to Swiss Life Asset Managers and Vauban Infrastructure Partners on the Aves One deal.

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